#JusticeForRohith: Chalo HCU movement to turn massive

Written by: Maitreyee Boruah
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Bengaluru, Jan 25: The voices demanding justice for Rohith Vemula is growing each day. If the protest continues, it is likely to turn into a civil movement in the coming days.

In fact, the Joint Action Committee for Social Justice, University of Hyderabad (UoH) is hosting a special session-Chalo HCU (Hyderabad Central University)--at the university campus on Monday (January 25).


The session is special--as it will see intellectuals, writers, filmmakers, activists, students and anyone who supports the struggle for justice for Rohith--come together under one roof.

The Joint Action Committee for Social Justice, UoH is in the forefront protesting against expulsion and boycott of five Dalit research scholars at the university.

26-year-old Rohith was one of the five scholars who were expelled, after a scuffle broke out between Ambedkar Students' Association (ASA) (Rohith was a member of ASA) and Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) in August last year.

Rohith committed suicide on January 17. Rohith's tragic death has become a rallying point for all those who have long been saying that there exists a systematic discrimination of Dalit students in the higher educational institutions across the country.
The e-mail invite of the Joint Action Committee for Social Justice, UoH, says, "The Joint Action Committee for Social Justice, UoH, has given a call for all people supporting the struggle for Justice for Rohith Vemula to come to the University of Hyderabad in solidarity on 25th January."

"Today 24th (January 24) marks one week of Rohith's death with no response from the University administration, no action on the SC/ST atrocities case filed, and not even one condolence visit from the Vice Chancellor of the University. It is the fifth day of indefinite hunger strike and three hunger strikers have developed serious complications. Our demands for justice remain unfulfilled.


"Please join us at University of Hyderabad campus, Gachibowli, Hyderabad on 25th January (all day). In case you can't come on 25th, still please do visit us anytime. We want our struggle and the struggle against Brahminism across the country to stay strong and for that we need continued solidarity," the e-mail adds.

Some of the prominent people going to be part of the day-long protest are journalist P Sainath, Prakash Ambedkar (grandson of BR Ambedkar) and writer and activist Meena Kandasamy. The Facebook page of the Joint Action Committee for Social Justice, UoH, posted a picture of students from the Calicut University (Kerala), who were in the Hyderabad University to join the protest on January 24.

Moreover, students of the Jawaharlal Nehru University on January 24 launched an indefinite hunger strike demanding justice for Rohith. Three students of the varsity -- Suchishree, Lenin Kumar and Shubhanshu -- have decided to sit on the fast to express solidarity with the seven students who are continuing their indefinite hunger strike at Hyderabad University for a week now.

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